July 21, 2024

Linkage Mag

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Gas Prices Rise and Fall, but Driving is Forever

Just a couple of weeks ago, the news was full of stories about $6-per-gallon gas — and how these prices just might hang around for a while. 

I even wrote a story about rising gas prices for linkagemag.com.

Today, the news is full of stories about falling gas prices. Okay.

Confession: I worked as newspaper reporter, editor and columnist for 20 years. I know how easy it is to take a set of facts — or trends — and set out to predict the future. The chances of being wrong are excellent.

It’s always a good idea to get your news from several different sources — especially in this era of colliding opinions and culture wars. 

It’s a very good bet that gas is going to go up and down. 

We all gripe when gas prices go up, but I’ve noticed that most of us still keep driving. Why? Because, in many cases, we need to drive to work — and to live our lives. 

But we also carry on driving because it is fun. That is why cars and 4×4 trucks will always exist, whether they run on gasoline, diesel, electricity — or maybe hydrogen fuel cells. Cars are fun, and being in total control of where the car is going is really, really fun.

Last week, I filled up my Toyota Tacoma 4×4 with expensive gas and headed out on a 18-mile drive to a very cool place called Three Creeks Lake. The road is smooth asphalt for a while, but as it climbs to 6,800 feet into the Deschutes National Forest, the road gets rougher and rougher. The last three miles of the road are a steep maze of deep holes, rock-studded ripples and loose gravel.

A 2-wheel-drive car cannot make this drive. In my 4×4, I crept over the obstacle course — and had tons of fun. This drive is always worth the effort, as it’s the only “easy” way you can get to the stunning Tam McArthur Rim — an ancient collapsed volcano that now cradles peaceful Three Creeks Lake. 

Oh, you can walk to this spot, but it’s an eight-mile round trip hike over very rugged country.

Most of us are going to keep on driving.